Inverurie Locos 2 Cove Rangers 3.


RANGERS – MCKENZIE REDFORD MILNE STRACHAN WATSON KELLY PARK YULE MEGGINSON (GRAY) MACRAE (BROWN) SCULLY UNUSED SUBS MASSON MILNE EMMETT MACLEOD MCCAFFERTY Stats – Locos First: Shots ON 3-6, Shots OFF 4-4, Fouls 10-15, Corners 2-8, Offside 4-2, Yellows 2-1 Inverurie Locos went into this SHFL clash just one day shy of going a full decade without a home league win over their Toonser rivals. Kenny Coull & Neil Gauld put Rangers to the sword that day & the wait to get one over their previous tenants goes on. It wasn’t for the lack of energy or effort however & Cove were mightily relieved to leave the Garioch with full pointage. Harlaw Park resembles a scene from M.A.S.H. these days with injured players aplenty with further knocks, bruises & issues seeing McCabe & sub keeper Cook ruled out, on top of the already lengthy list. That meant a start for Dan Crisp & a trialist keeper called in as back up. Cove Rangers have a side that should be more than comfortable in League One, let alone the Highland League, & their fine collection of players, the form book & their record at Harlaw all pointed to a heavy away win here. Only two shock play off results sees the Aberdeen club still in north football. This was senior competitive match number seven hundred for Inverurie & also appearance number fifty for Stuart Duff. Match referee under the Harlaw lights was Liam Duncan, an official who seemingly is always just a moment away from a stramash, a fuss & a stoosh whenever the Locos are one of the participants. Supporters were predicting more of the same as they came through the turnstiles. Locos charity partner for the night was SensationALL with a young representative releasing balloons ahead of kick off. Cove had a penalty on four minutes. Mitch Megginson was the best player on the field & weaved along the byeline. There was a tangling of legs rather than any clear & obvious foul on the attacker but referee Duncan pointed to the spot without any hesitation. MEGGINSON swept the spot kick home. Not the way to start a match against the defending champions & almost everyone’s champions elect already. Chris Angus barged his way into a dangerous place but his squared ball to Leyden didn’t come to anything. The punters in the Enclosure were ensuring that the match official was fully aware of their unhappiness at how his performance was being received. Ryan Strachan blocked a through ball with an outstretched arm but this wasn’t seen, Herd was then yellowed correctly for a trip on Megginson. A Gauld volley was wide but it was 1-1 on 22 minutes. Jordan LEYDEN stroked home a smashing controlled left peg drive across McKenzie & into the net. Stuart Duff had been brilliant in the build up. All square & well deserved. A minute later & this depleted Locos group were incredibly 2-1 up. Chris ANGUS took a touch, swivelled & netted low into the net. Brilliant from the Railwaymen. The Main Stand, busy with midweek revellers taking advantage of a wonderful hospitality offering, were chuckling as the diminutive Neil Gauld was adjudged to have fouled the towering Cove keeper. Not quite Joe Jordanesque. Angus unleashed a drive that was well held before a pivotal moment. Jordan Leyden looked favourite in a race for a through ball but the advancing McKenzie won this battle & a great chance for a 3-1 lead was gone. More comedy at the halfway line. The ball was around a yard out of play before a Cove player playfully back-heeled it into play. The standside linesman must have had his view impeded in some way as he failed to raise his flag. Neil Gauld questioned the call & was yellowed, with several similar scenarios not finding the same punishment as the match wore on. Big Eric Watson, so often the panto villain & such a wonderful battler, clearly handled the ball as it leapt off the surface. Another decision stoking up the disgruntled home fans. Their mood worsened as a freakish goal levelled affairs. MEGGINSON​ reacted sharply to a ball headed into the danger area & it was 2-2. Terrible timing, just on the beak, but Locos had put up a splendid show in that first period. Many would have classed Liam Duncan’s first half as troubled, especially on the back of so much controversy in Locos matches & boss Neil Cooper was sent off at half time. Yule, Gauld & Megginson had early second half opportunities. Connor Rennie had a backpost header blocked, with finally a yellow for an away player. Yule cautioned for a grab & block on Angus. MEGGINSON netted his hat-trick on seventy two minutes, & whilst his finish was neat & classy yet another handball was inexplicably missed in the build up. Really harsh on Inverurie. Megginson was close to running riot & rammed a shot wide & forced Reid into a brave stop. McKenzie & Watson were then fooled by an angular long ball, Gauld beating them & hooking the ball goalward. Angus outjumped his two opponents but the ball went over. A Brown volley was struck perfectly with a diving Andy Reid it’s equal. Great football. Soapy Souter cleared a shot off the line but Locos just couldn’t find an equaliser that would not have been an unfair outcome. FT Locos 2 Cove 3. A super advert for the north game with both teams giving it their all. Megginson was the class act but for Inverurie, on a night of no failures, Chris Angus had his best match in red & black & special mention to Dan Crisp who was brilliant on a rare start. Next it’s a trip to Kynoch Park in Keith. 

#locos #cove

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